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Friday, 18 September 1942

Mr CURTIN - The Government is aware that workers employed under awards in the State of New South Wales, and transferred by the Allied Works Council to similar work in Queensland, receive a lower wage under the Queensland law than had been paid to them under the New South Wales law. This problem exists between other States also. In some instances, the rate in Victoria is lower than that in New South Wales. In certain aspects, the Queensland rate is higher than that in New South Wales, whilst in other respects the opposite is the case. The Government has asked the Commonwealth Arbitration Court to examine the matter and provide a formula, in order that a fair and proper basis may be established. The view of the Government is that the matter is one rather for a judicial pronouncement than for ad hoc decision by Ministers.

Mr Holt - The Government could indicate the principle to be applied.

Mr CURTIN - That is being determined by the Court. In relation to the last portion of the question, I merely say that the honorable gentleman has indicated that in all probability he will support the Government's constitutional proposals when they are placed before the House.

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